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Fayette Robinson, California and its Gold Regions; with a Geographical and Topographical View of the Country, Its Mineral and Agricultural Resources

Fayette Robinson, California and its Gold Regions; with a Geographical and Topographical View of the Country, Its Mineral and Agricultural Resources. Prepared from Official and Other Authentic Documents; with a Map of the United States and California, Showing the Routes of the U.S. Mail Steam Packets to California, also the Various Overland Routes. New York: Stringer & Townsend, 222 Broadway, 1849. Collation: Front., fold, map, [1] title, [2] copyright and printer's imprint, [3] preface, [4] blank, [5]-6 contents, [7]8-124 text, [125] 126-144 appendix. 8 x 5 1.2 in. Binding: Yellow wrappers. Cover title within rules, same as above, at head of title: Price 50 Cents.; rear wrapper, publisher's advt. Copy comes with protective slipcase; half orange leather over decorative marble boards. Backstrip: gold stamped title, author, date, ornaments and raised bands. Map: [fold;title within decorative border]. Map of the United States The British Provinces Mexico &c. Showing the Routes of the U.S. Mail Steam Packets to California, and Plan of the Gold Region. Published by J.H. Colton, 86 Cedar St New York. 1849. Drawn & Engraved by J.M. Atwood, New York. Entered According to Act of Congress, in the Year 1849, by J.H. Colton in the Clerks Office of the District Court of Southern District of New York. 21 1/4 x 25 1/4 in. [gold region highlighted in yellow; minor tear in folds where the map is bound into the text leaves.] Insets in Map: Table of Distances; [map] From New York to San Francisco via Cape Horn, 17,000 miles, Via Panama, 5,900 m.; Map of the Gold Region. California [gold region highlighted in yellow]; [illus. of] Pyramid Lake, Upper California.Refernces: Cowan I, pp. 193-194; Cowan II, p. 537; Eberstadt 106:62; Graff 3537; Howes R-366; Kurutz 539a; Norris 3291; Rocq 16029; Sloan, Gold Rush, 120; Vail, Gold Fever, p.22; Wheat, Books, 168; Wheat Maps, 116.

Fayette Robinson's publication has received considerable acclaim as one of the best early accounts devoted to the run for gold despite the fact that he did not make the journey himself. In his preface, dated December 1848, Robinson explained that his New York publishers wanted him "to make a fair exposition of the most authentic accounts of California and the gold region.' In keeping with this request, Robinson assembled a superb anthology of several of the earliest reports concerning the gold discovery, conditions in California, history of region, and the ways to reach the diggings. To further enhance its value, Robinson squeezed in reports by such authorities as John C. Fremont, T.O. Larkin, Stephen W. Kearny, Richard B. Mason and others. The valuable appendix adds information drawn from newspapers and government reports on the routes via the Isthmus of Panama and conditions in San Francisco. In going to California, Robinson championed the northern Overland Trail, departing from Council Grove, Kansas. Citing the experts that he squeezed into his guide, he confidently stated, it sill "satisfy readers that California is really a land of gold and pearls."

The large folding map provided gold seekers with an excellent overview of the principal routes to California. The McClatchy copy has the overland routes highlighted by hand. Knowing of the tedium of the long trek, Stringer & Townsend promoted reading as a way of passing time. They included an advertisement on the rear wrapper promoting their stock of books but also pointing out that "As an article of merchandise there can be nothing safer or better than Books. They eat nothing nor do they spoil."

Two variant issues of Robinson exist. One consists of 138 pages with six pages of advertisements. The present copy is superior in that it consists of 144 pages of text. Some copies include advertisements on the back of the front wrapper and recto and verso of the back wrapper.

Processing and shipping within the continental U.S. $25.00 plus 1.5% replacement cost insurance. Witherell's strives to provide as much information and photographs as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Condition statements are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Witherell's. All lots are sold "AS IS" under terms and conditions. Please be advised we do not provide porters nor packing materials for pick ups.

Condition:

Some soiling to outer edges of text pages. Wrappers with minor tears and curling along edges; verso of front wrapper with bookplate of Robert E. Cowan. Edges untrimmed.

Estimate: $1,000 - $2,500
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium
$3,328
09/16/2020

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Witherell's strives to provide as much information and photographs as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Condition statements are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Witherell's. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms and Conditions. Methods of payment are cash, check, money orders, or wire transfer for foreign payments. Please note we do not accept credit cards. This auction has a buyer's premium of 21% when bidding through witherells.com.